Tag Archives: gun ban

Judge Upholds MA AR-15 Ban: “Not Within Scope of Personal Right to Bear Arms”

Boston, MA— A lawsuit challenging Massachusetts’ ban on assault weapons was dismissed by a federal judge on April 5, who asserted in his ruling that military-style rifles and high-capacity magazines, banned by the state in 1998, are “not within the scope of the personal right to ‘bear Arms’ under the Second Amendment.”

“The AR-15 and its analogs, along with large capacity magazines, are simply not weapons within the original meaning of the individual constitutional right to ‘bear arms,’” U.S. District Judge William Young wrote in the decision.

Young said in his ruling that the features of a military-style rifle are “designed and intended to be particularly suitable for combat rather than sporting applications,” and that Massachusetts was within its rights to enact a ban through elected representatives.

“In the absence of federal legislation, Massachusetts is free to ban these weapons and large capacity magazines. Other states are equally free to leave them unregulated and available to their law-abiding citizens,” Young wrote. “These policy matters are simply not of constitutional moment. Americans are not afraid of bumptious, raucous, and robust debate about these matters. We call it democracy.”

The Hill reported that the lawsuit dismissed by Young was filed by the Gun Owners Action League of Massachusetts, which claimed the ban infringed on Second Amendment rights. The group asserted in its complaint that the term “assault weapons” is non-technical and “entirely fabricated” to politicize the most popular types of guns in the United States.

“Healey unilaterally decreed that thousands of Massachusetts residents are suddenly criminals simply for having exercised their Second Amendment rights,” the complaint said, in reference to Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, who expanded in 2016 the definition of “copies or duplicates” of AR-15s and other semiautomatic rifles that are prohibited under the state’s 1998 assault-weapon ban.

In a statement, the National Rifle Association (NRA) criticized the decision.

“Like all law-abiding Massachusetts gun owners, the NRA was extremely disappointed that the court upheld Massachusetts’s ban on many of the most popular firearms in America,” the group said.

In his decision, Young, who Bloomberg reports was nominated by former President Ronald Reagan, quoted the late conservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who wrote the majority opinion for the Supreme Court in a critical 2008 decision that overturned Washington’s ban on hand guns, but also warned of potential limitations.

“Weapons that are most useful in military service — M-16 rifles and the like” aren’t protected by the Second Amendment and “may be banned,” Young quoted Scalia as saying, referring to the automatic rifle popular with the military. The AR-15 is similar to an M-16, Young said, equating the military fully automatic firearm with a civilian semi-automatic.

In addition, Young also rejected attempts by the gun-rights group to challenge the ban on the grounds that AR-15s are extremely popular and widely owned within the United States.

“The AR-15’s present day popularity is not constitutionally material,” Young said.

City Council Passes Gun Ban On S.C. State Capitol Grounds

S.C. Governor Nikki Haley signed a bill to remove the Confederate battle flag off of State Capitol grounds on Thursday. Hours after Gov. Haley signed the bill, the Columbia City Council passed an ordinance temporarily banning weapons within a 250-foot perimeter surrounding the South Carolina State House grounds in an emergency meeting.

As reported previously by Truth In Media, a fight broke out during a protest at the State capitol grounds last week, but no threats have been made since then. So why is there a temporary ban?

According to the Free-Times.com, Columbia Police Chief Skip Holbrook said the emergency ordinance is not in response to any information or intelligence specifically in connection with Friday’s flag removal ceremony.

“No specific intelligence or information, we are just exercising prudence and caution,” Holbrook says. “Our goal is to have peaceful, lawful assembly. This helps us facilitate and make sure everybody is safe.”

“During this period of extraordinary circumstances that have arisen, the City of Columbia believes it is in the best interest of public safety, free speech and freedom of peacable assembly to temporarily extend the existing ban of weapons as enacted by the General Assembly within 250 feet of the borders of the Capitol Complex,” the ordinance reads.

Violators will be charged with a misdemeanor and fined up to $500 or sent to jail for up to thirty days if caught with a weapon.

Truth In Media will be covering the flag removal ceremony on Friday.

At 10am, the Confederate Flag came down from the State capitol memorial.

Exclusive: More Businesses Tell Gun Owners To Leave Guns At Home

 

Sonic and Chili’s add themselves to the list of businesses who ask patrons to leave your gun at home.

According to Forbes, gun rights activists walked into a San Antonio Sonic and Chili’s with long rifles strapped to their backs, which caused corporate to release statements:

From Sonic: “Sonic and our franchise owners work hard to provide an inviting environment for customers and employees alike. While we historically have relied upon local laws to guide how we address the display of guns at drive-ins, recent actions required we carefully reconsider this approach. We’ve considered the views and desires of our customers and employees that staff the drive-ins across the country. Accordingly, we’re asking that customers refrain from bringing guns onto our patios or into our indoor dining areas. With respect to the storage of guns in vehicles, we ask that our customers continue to honor local laws.”

From Chili’s parent company Brinker International: “At Chili’s Grill & Bar, our passion is making our guests feel special in an environment where they can focus on family and friends over a great meal.  Recent open carry events at our restaurants and others have prompted passionate and diverse feedback.  We recognize that the open carry of firearms in restaurants creates an uncomfortable atmosphere and is not permitted under many local liquor laws.  So, we kindly ask that guests refrain from openly carrying firearms into our restaurants and we will continue to follow state and local laws on this issue.”

Sonic and Chili’s join Chipotle, Starbucks and Jack In The Box, who all have clear policies that violate customer’s 2nd Amendment rights.

Target Targeted by Gun-Control Activists

According to the LA Times, Minneapolis-based retailer Target is being asked to not allow open carry inside its big box stores.

A petition launched this week by Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a group created following the Newton, Conn., school shooting, has now garnered more than 10,000 signatures.

“Target is a central part of the lives of American moms,” said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action. “We support the 2nd Amendment, but people walking through the aisles flaunting their loaded weapons … is unacceptable. How can we, or the store’s employees or law enforcement, possibly know if they are good guys or bad guys?”

Molly Snyder, a Target spokeswoman, said that “the safety and security of our guests and team members is our highest priority.” Snyder said stores follow state and federal laws regarding open carry. She pointed out that Target does not sell firearms or ammunition.

Target, a retailer who is still recovering after the large data breach last year, most likely can’t afford to alienate any of its customer base.

BenSwann.com reported that the NRA called Open Carry protesters “weird and certainly not a practical way to go normally about your business while preparing to defend yourself.”

BenSwann.com’s Joshua Cook asked the Public Relations Director for Open Carry Texas, Tov Henderson what he thought about the NRA’s statement.
Tov Henderson:“When I first read the blog post released by the NRA, condemning the open carry movement in Texas, I was completely taken back. As is the case with most gun owners, I’ve always seen the NRA as the vanguard of the 2nd Amendment.  You grow up revering that organization for always being at the forefront in the fight to preserve and restore our gun rights.”

“I was in utter shock seeing the NRA take a step back, attacking us for legally exercising our natural rights that are protected by both the law, and the Texas and U.S. Constititutions.  This is especially the case, as the article was critical of tactics that we no longer use.”

“Many weeks before the NRA’s negative statements on open carry, the four major open carry groups in Texas came together and decided, in a joint effort, to change the game plan in which we use to advance open carry legislation.  So the criticism seemed out of place, and totally unnecessary.”

“When the NRA’s Chris Cox publicly disavowed their own blogger’s statements, and reaffirmed their support for our organizations, it definitely helped to restore my faith in them.”

“I certainly had a hard time believing that the NRA would condemn organizations that have pushed the open carry issue to the forefront.  Prior to our open carry walks, open carry legislation wasn’t a priority in the legislature.  Bills continued to get shot down in committee.  It wasn’t until we, in the open carry movement, employed an nontraditional game plan, that Austin took notice.”

“It is reassuring to know that the NRA still supports open carry, and that they intend on continuing to exert their influence in helping us achieve the goal of getting open carry legislation passed in the state legislature.”

“I think the NRA also learned an important lesson: mistakes happen.  We’ve made mistakes as well.  No organization is perfect.  As long as both of our organizations continue to learn from our mistakes, correct them, and grow as a result, 2015 provides great potential to achieve our mutually desired legislative goal of open carry handgun in the state of Texas.”

Joshua Cook: “Is your movement growing?”

Tov Henderson: “In just over a year, we’ve manage to grow to approximately 20,000 members, and our rate of growth continues to expand every single day.  Just a few months ago, we were adding around 30 new members a day.  As of today, the average daily addition of new members has skyrocketed to 250.  Even with negative media attention from leftists media sources, it hasn’t hampered our growth in the least.  We’re learning that more and more people are eager to get back to the original, intended definition of the 2nd Amendment.

Joshua Cook: “What are you trying to accomplish?”

Tov Henderson: “In the state of Texas, we have a peculiar set of laws that allow for an individual to open carry a long gun or a pre-1899 black powder pistol, but not a handgun.   In other words, it is perfect okay to sling an AR-15 over your should while you in public, but openly holstering a Glock would make you a criminal.  Not only is the concept itself absurd, but it is especially so when you consider the fact that 44 other states already allow some form of open carry handgun.

“Being that Texas has always held the reputation of being the most gun friendly state in the nation, it almost comical when you consider the reality of how far behind our state actually is on gun rights.  Furthermore, we’re not asking for something that is alien, we’re asking for something that is actually the norm in the vast majority of states in this country.   What’s the hold up?”

Joshua Cook: “Is your campaign successful?”

Tov Henderson: “We’ve had a great deal of success in our campaign to achieve open carry legislation in the state of Texas.  We recently received something we never had before; a committee hearing in Austin that was especially created for us, and occurred as a direct result of what we do every week all across the state.”

“For the first time ever, open carry handgun is a serious topic, and that topic is receiving international attention.”

“Plus, everywhere we do our open carry walks, there is a vast outpouring of support from those we meet.  Texans all across the state are showing their support, and looking forward to having the option of open carrying their handgun  when they choose to do so.”

“Texans understand that  the words, “shall not be infringed”, form a clear statement, and that the government has no Constitutional authority to limit our right to bear arms as we see fit.  And we want the legal option to openly bear our handguns as is already clearly permitted by the 2nd Amendment.”

 

Backdoor Gun Control: Will Obama Use an Executive Order to Ban Lead Ammo Imports?

 

U.S. Congressman Jeff Duncan’s communications director told Benswann.com’s Joshua Cook, “we’re very concerned and extensively looking into the lead issue.”

After Congress defeated the Democrat led anti-gun bill this year, President Obama said he would use executive action to promote his gun control agenda. One of the executive orders signed by Obama prevents military-grade weapons from being imported into the U.S.

If the President can bypass Congress by using agencies like the EPA to shut down lead ammunition smelters, and stop lead ammunition imports by executive order, then you essentially have backdoor gun control.

According to the National Rifle Association (NRA), the only lead smelter in the U.S. is located in Herculaneum, Missouri, and owned and operated by the Doe Run Company. It has existed in the same location since 1892.

The Environmental Protection Agency is forcing the company to close due to the excessively emissions restrictions placed on the facility.

According to the NRA, Doe Run made significant efforts to reduce lead emissions from the smelter, but in 2008 the federal Environmental Protection Agency issued new National Ambient Air Quality Standards for lead that were 10 times tighter than the previous standard.  Given the new lead air quality standard, Doe Run made the decision to close the smelter.

Alan West wrote that this closure is basically backdoor gun control because a gun without ammo is useless. TheBlaze.com questions West’s main thesis that the smelter plant closure will effect lead ammunition, but for the NRA it’s a big concern.

According to the NRA website, “At this time, it’s unclear if Doe Run or another company will open a new lead smelter in the United States that can meet the more stringent lead air quality standards by using more modern smelting methods.   What is clear is that after the Herculaneum smelter closes its doors in December, entirely domestic manufacture of conventional ammunition, from raw ore to finished cartridge, will be impossible.”

It’s a big concern for Congressman Jeff Duncan’s office too. U.S. Congressman Jeff Duncan communications director told Benswann.com’s Joshua Cook, “we’re very concerned and extensively looking into the lead issue.”

Earlier this year gun owners experienced ammo shortages that sent ammo prices soaring. Duncan’s office said that his investigation into the  shortages is almost complete.

A shortage of lead used to make conventional ammunition is a big concern not only for gun owners, but also for law enforcement. While visiting a local gun shop in Greenville, S.C., Joshua Cook was told by the owner that local law enforcement was trying to acquire 9000 rounds, but couldn’t because of ammo shortages.

For most Americans, cutting off the ammunition supply chain is not only a national security threat, but a serious threat to the 2nd Amendment and liberty itself.

 

Benswann.com will investigate further into this issue and report new information as it develops.